Missouri Coalition for the Environment (MCE) stands in solidarity with the family of George Floyd and everyone who suffers fear, oppression, and violence because of the color of their skin. We cannot continue to watch and participate in a system that keeps killing black men, women, and children. The murder of George Floyd is another reminder of exactly why we cannot get “back to normal” after this pandemic. “Normal” as we know it is oppressive, dangerous, and deadly for too many people. George Floyd, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Breonna Taylor, and Michael Brown are just a few of the millions of people who have been oppressed and sacrificed for a white majority to maintain “normalcy.”
At MCE, we know that people of color, low-income communities, and indigenous peoples are disproportionately affected by public health and environmental threats and lack equal access to many of Missouri’s natural resources. We are engaged in identifying, understanding, and dismantling systemic racism and implicit bias within our own organization and the environmental community.
As we put the pieces of our society back together over the next year and learn to live with COVID-19, we are called to something much better than “normal.” Too many of us, our brothers, and our sisters, do not feel safe in Missouri’s open and wild spaces. Too many of us breathe toxic air, drink contaminated water, and can’t access fresh, healthy food. These injustices require our attention and action. Whether it’s resisting the effects of industrial agriculture, fossil fuels, or centuries of systemic racism, MCE is committed to a cleaner, healthier, and safer environment for everyone in Missouri.